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Childhood adversity and psychiatric disorder in young adulthood: An analysis of 107,704 Swedes
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
Number of Authors: 4
2016 (English)In: Journal of Psychiatric Research, ISSN 0022-3956, E-ISSN 1879-1379, Vol. 77, 67-75 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Childhood adversity (CA) is associated with increased risks of psychiatric disorder in young adulthood, but details in this association are less known. We aimed to explore the association of a range of CA indicators with psychiatric disorder in young adulthood, and the impact of age at exposure, disorder type and accumulation of indicators. We capitalized on Sweden's extensive and high-quality registers and analyzed a cohort of all Swedes (N = 107,704) born in Stockholm County 1987-1991. Adversities included familial death, parental substance misuse and psychiatric disorder, parental criminality, parental separation, public assistance recipiency and residential instability. Age at exposure was categorized as: 0-6.9 years (infancy and early childhood), 7-11.9 years (middle childhood), and 12-14 years (early adolescence). Psychiatric disorders after age 15 were defined from ICD codes through registers. Risks were calculated as Hazard Ratios (HR) with 95% confidence intervals (CI). Results showed that exposure to at least one CA was associated with an increased risk of psychiatric disorder (HR 1.4, 95% CI: 1.3-1.4). Risks were increased for mood, anxiety, and psychotic disorders and ADHD but not for eating disorders. The risk varied with type of disorder but was similar for all exposure periods. Individuals with multiple (3+) CAs had a two-fold risk of psychiatric disorder (HR 2.0, 95% CI: 1.9-2.1). In conclusion, our findings support the long-term negative impact of CA on mental health, regardless of developmental period of exposure. Given that experience of CA is common, efforts should be put to alleviate the burden of childhood adversities for children, particularly among the most disadvantaged.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 77, 67-75 p.
Keyword [en]
Childhood adversity, Sensitive period, School performance, Epidemiology, Socioeconomic, Young adulthood
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-131195DOI: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2016.02.018ISI: 000374804700010PubMedID: 26994339OAI: diva2:938880
Available from: 2016-06-17 Created: 2016-06-14 Last updated: 2016-06-17Bibliographically approved

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Vinnerljung, Bo
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